Music Composition, MM

Home / Degree Programs / Music Composition, MM

The MM program in composition focuses on the development of skills necessary to pursue a career in music composition. Composers learn through experiential opportunities, including composing for fellow student performers leading to performances of their works in venues on campus and off. Project-based experiences including working with the Visiting Quartet Residency program and creating new works for student string quartets.

Students develop advanced skills such as orchestration, electronic studio techniques, film and video scoring, and jazz composition in the degree program. Collaboration with music scholars, theorists, performers, educators and other composers under the guidance of renowned composition faculty provides students with a broad and well-rounded foundation for advanced careers in music.

Program Offered

Music Composition, MM

Offered by
Herberger Institute for Design & the Arts


Plan of Study

The Plan of Study is the required curriculum to complete the program.

View Plan of Study

Application Requirements

Application Procedures + Requirements

Application Deadlines
Spring 2021: October 1, 2020
Fall 2021: December 1, 2020

Curriculum Checksheet

Checksheets break down the course requirements for each degree program.

Music Composition (MM) 

Affording Grad School

Music Scholarships
All applicants are automatically considered for merit based scholarships, with priority given to those who audition and/or interview on-campus.

Teaching Assistantships
Teaching assistantships are offered to graduate students who convey exceptional ability. Learn more about TA benefits, eligibility and application procedures.

Financial Aid
ASU has many financial aid options. Almost everyone, regardless of income, can qualify for some form of financial aid. In fact, more than 70 percent of all ASU students receive some form of financial assistance every year.

Program Requirements

The credit hour requirements for the degree are distributed as follows:

composition (9 credit hours)
electives (8 credit hours)
music theory and music history (9 credit hours)
thesis (6 credit hours)

The thesis is an original composition that demonstrates mastery of composing for the selected performance medium and the coherent organization of musical material.

Additional Curriculum Requirements
Completion of diagnostic exams in music history and music theory is required of all new graduate music students prior to enrollment in the ASU School of Music.

Additional information about degree requirements for all graduate music programs may be found on the check sheets.